From Edward Stevens1
[Philadelphia, May 7, 1796]
My dear Friend
Almost ever since your Departure I have been confined to my Chamber by a severe and obstinate Catarrh. Tho’ much better, at present, my Health is still so much deranged, that I dread encountering the Warmth of the Summer Months in this City. I have therefore, determined to take a Voyage to Sea, and as I shall visit St. Croix, before my Return, Mrs. Stevens has concluded to accompany me with our little ones. Our Absence will be but short. If no unexpected Event takes place we shall certainly return by the Month of September. I could not, however, leave America without assuring you of our best Wishes for the Health and Prosperity of yourself and Family. May every Blessing attend you. Mrs. S. unites with me in affectionate Remembrance of Mrs. Hamilton. I remain with unfeigned Attachment.
My dear Sir Your sincere Freind
We embark this Day.
ALS, Hamilton Papers, Library of Congress.
1. Stevens had been a childhood friend of H in St. Croix. See H to Stevens, November 11, 1769. He had later studied at King’s College in New York and at Edinburgh, and he practiced medicine for ten years in St. Croix. See Stevens to H, October 5, 1791. In 1793 he moved to Philadelphia, and in September of that year was H’s and Elizabeth Hamilton’s doctor when both had yellow fever. See George Washington to H, September 6, 1793.